Medical Minute 12-15: Chilling Treatment for a Stroke

By: Melissa Medalie Email
By: Melissa Medalie Email

As an OR nurse, Erwin Elbis has seen pain every day on the job for 26 years. But recently he lived that pain.

"It was probably the worst headache I've ever had," said Erwin Elbis, Nurse Anesthetist at Florida Hospital.

Three days of head-splitting pain.

"As soon as I got up, I just fell to the floor, I could not feel my right side," he said.

Erwin was having a stroke. He managed to drag himself downstairs to his car, and in a daze, drove to the hospital.

"So I just prayed to God, get me there, get me home," said Erwin Elbis.

Doctor Michael Rodricks is part of the team that worked on Erwin. A team Erwin's worked with for years. First they put a stent in to get the blood flowing but then came a dangerous fever.

"His body was 102, 103 degrees, so basically his brain was cooking," said Michael Rodricks, M.D., Critical Care Physician Florida Hospital.

Doctors used a new procedure for stroke called normothermia. They use cooling gel pads to reset the patient's internal thermostat to the right temperature, 98.6. It saved Erwin's brain and his life.

"Without a doubt I think advanced fever control and temperature modulation is the wave of the future," said Michael Rodricks, M.D.

"I was going to be drooling on a bib, in a wheelchair for the rest of my life."

Instead, Erwin's re-focusing his priorities.

"The goal now for me is to help others. Support those people that are surviving and struggling themselves to get back on track."

Back on track and back doing what he loves.

For More information, call: (407) 740-0789 ext: 579

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